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HEADLINES:      September 6 - Huge Step Taken by Europe’s Bank to Abate a Crisis       September 6 - U.S. policy on China sees little progress       September 6 - State Department drops Maoists from terrorist watch list       September 6 - Venezuela Holds U.S. Vessel And Crew On Suspicion Of Arms Trafficking       September 5 - DNC Overrules Delegates, Rams God and Jerusalem Back into Platform       September 5 - Powerful quake hits Costa Rica      

Sunday, April 30, 2006

What the Democrats Give, the Democrats Take Away - and Then Some

Senate democrats are set to introduce an amendment proposed by Senator Bob Menendez, D-NJ, which would eliminate the federal tax on gasoline and diesel for sixty days, cutting the cost of gasoline by 18 cents and of diesel by 24 cents per gallon. The measure would provide 100 million dollars of tax relief per day.

Great idea, isn't it? It would be if stopped there. But it doesn't.

The $100 million per day that the federal government would lose by providing this "federal gas tax holiday" will be passed on to the oil companies by cutting six billion dollars in tax breaks to the companies.

Ok, I know, there's no one shedding a tear for the oil companies, but does anyone honestly believe the oil companies are going to absorb that loss? Don't count on it. They're going to pass their loss on to - you guessed it - the consumer, and we'll be right back where we started, at least until the sixty day "federal gas tax holiday" is over.

After sixty days the federal gas tax will be reinstated, but the tax breaks to the oil companies will not. The federal government will continue to receive the increased revenue from the oil companies and will begin to once again receive from consumers the extra 100 million dollars per day in gas taxes. The oil companies, who will continue to pay the extra taxes, will continue to pass that additional tax burden on to the consumer, who will now also once again be paying the federal gas tax.

The price of a gallon of gasoline will be higher than ever, but democrats will claim that they stood up for the workingman by temporarily reducing the consumer tax burden and passing that burden on to the big oil companies. Mr. and Mrs. Workingman will buy the lie and will blame the higher than ever gasoline prices on the oil companies because they increased their prices, and on Republicans because, as we all know, Republicans are in bed with "big oil."

Friday, April 28, 2006

This story is out today from The Associated Press:

MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Mexico's Congress approved a bill Friday that would legalize drug possession for personal use -- decriminalizing the carrying of small amounts of marijuana, cocaine and even heroin.

The only step remaining is the signature of the president, whose office indicates he will sign the measure, despite the implications for the war on drugs.


"The presidency congratulates the Congress for approving the reforms," said presidential spokesman Ruben Aguilar. "This law gives police and prosecutors better legal tools to combat drug crimes that do so much damage to our youth and children."

The bill legalizes possession of small amounts of heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and marijuana.

"No charges will be brought against ... addicts or consumers who are found in possession of any narcotic for personal use," the bill reads.
What! This law may, in fact, help police and prosecutors. If it's no longer be a crime to possess small amounts of heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and marijuana, then police and prosecutors don't have to bother with that part of the drug problem at all. That does, indeed, make it easier for police and prosecutors, but I fail to see how that is going to help the "youth and children."

This is the country from which millions have come illegally into our country. Hundreds of thousands have been marching to protest the U.S. government's getting tough on illegal immigration from this country. Are we to accept that we should continue to allow people from a county where it's legal to possess heroin and cocaine to come into our country without any screening at all? Are we to believe that it would be racist to build a wall to keep people from this country from illegally crossing the boarder into our country?

Simply incredible!

Well Said, Mr. President

When asked about the national anthem being sung in Spanish, President Bush had this to say:

I think the national anthem ought to be sung in English, and I think people who want to be a citizen of this country ought to learn English, and they ought to learn to sing the national anthem in English.

Thank you, Mr. President. Well said.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Political Correctness Hides the Truth

I am absolutely sick and tired of political correctness! It clouds issues by hiding the truth.

The following is an April 27, 2006, A.P. story that illustrates this point. The bold print is what I've added to show what should have been written if the writer had had any interest in reporting the truth.

Apr 27, 2006 4:25 pm US/Pacific
State Senate Supports Immigrant Walkout On Monday

(AP) SACRAMENTO California's state senators on Thursday endorsed Monday's boycott of schools, jobs and stores by illegal immigrants and their allies as supporters equated the protest with great social movements in American history.

By a 24-13 vote that split along party lines, the California Senate approved a resolution that calls the one-day protest the Great American Boycott 2006 and describes it as an attempt to educate Americans "about the tremendous contribution illegal immigrants make on a daily basis to our society and economy."

"It's one day ... for illegal immigrants to tell the country peacefully, 'We matter ... (we're) not invisible,'" said Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero, D-Los Angeles, the resolution's chief author. She said illegal immigrants make up a third of California's labor force and a quarter of its residents.

Opponents said the nonbinding resolution was misleading because it failed to mention a goal of the boycott was pressuring Congress to legalize millions of undocumented people (illegal aliens).

"It is a disingenuous effort to put the government of California on record supporting open borders," said Sen. Bill Morrow, R-Oceanside.

The boycott, also called "A Day Without illegal Immigrants," grew out of huge pro-illegal immigrant marches across the United States in recent weeks. Organizers are urging people (illegal aliens) to stay home from school and jobs and avoid spending money on Monday to demonstrate their importance to the U.S. economy.

California's top education official appeared with school officials in several cities Thursday to urge students to stay in school on Monday.

State Superintendent for Public Instruction Jack O'Connell encouraged students interested in the illegal immigration issue to voice their opinions by participating in protest activities but only after attending their classes.

"If students need to protest, they should feel free to do so after school," O'Connell told students and reporters at San Jose High Academy. "We want students to exercise free speech, but not at the expense of their education."

Rallies are planned for Monday in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Gardena, Bell, Santa Ana, Sacramento, San Jose, Oakland, Concord and other cities.

School officials in San Leandro, meanwhile, said Thursday that rising tensions over the illegal immigration issue may have contributed to a series of brawls between Hispanic and black teenagers.

Over a dozen San Leandro High School students were taken into custody Wednesday following the fights that started on campus and spilled over into the parking lot of a nearby convenience store.

While educators theorized that the stress children of illegal immigrants are under while the illegal immigration debate roils may have played a role in the violence, students said that racial tensions predated recent developments.

Several senators equated the protest with the civil rights movement of the 1960s and other major events in American history.

Segregation was ended in part because of the public bus boycott by blacks in Montgomery, Ala., in 1955, said Romero.

Sen. Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, likened the debate over illegal immigrant rights to the fights over slavery, women's suffrage, the internment of Japanese during World War II, and the Vietnam War.

The article continues, and you can read the rest of it here if you like, but you get the point. The media and liberal politicians are trying to frame this issue as one of racism and bias against immigrants. The fact is that this issue has nothing to do with racism; it has nothing to do with bias against immigrants. The issue is one of respect for the law, something that too many people today have too little of.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

DNC Releases List of Better Choices Than Tony Snow for White House Press Secretary

Following President Bush's announcement today that former Fox News host Tony Snow would replace Scott McClellan as the White House press secretary, the Democratic National Committee issued a statement critical of the selection.

The American people should get ready for another Snow job from the Bush White House.

...Tony Snow represents more of the same, not the fresh start the Administration needed. This is an interdepartmental move from one part of the conservative infrastructure to another that allows a darling of the right-wing to deliver the same misleading message, cherry-picked information and spin to the American people.
Shortly after this statement was released, DNC Chairman Howard Dean released this follow-up statement.

I just received a phone call from Nancy Pelosi, and she reminded me that she's been working hard to put together an agenda to help the Democrat Party overcome the image of being the party without an agenda, the party that does nothing but criticize the other party. She reminded me that it's not enough for us to criticize the other guys; we have to have our own ideas, like affordable access to broadband for every American, for example.

Let me assure everyone that the criticism of Tony Snow is not all we have. We do, in fact, have ideas. We have better ideas than the President about who would have been a better selection than Mr. Snow for White House press secretary.

How about Barbara Streisand; she would be a good one. She could even sing press releases to the American people. That would be cool. Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks could do that, too. How about Michael Moore? He's a well-spoken guy. He would probably even shave and comb his hair for a job like that. Another good choice would have been Martin Sheen. Heck, he even plays a President on television, so you know he's qualified. What about Jesse Jackson? He has a way with words; plus, it would be good if he had an actual job. Speaking of jobs, Al Franken would be really good, and with Air America losing more than a third of its audience in the past year, he might need the job pretty soon.

There are lots of people who would have made a better choice for White House press secretary than Tony Snow. I've listed several of them.

See, we are a party of ideas.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The Mother of All Battles - Again?

Iranian defense minister Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar has recently said that the United States would meet a humiliating defeat if it attacks Iran.

If America chooses the military option a humiliating defeat worse than their failure in the Tabas desert will await them.

Najjar reminds me a little bit of Saddam Hussein’s 1991 rhetoric about “the mother of all battles” and Americans who would “swim in their own blood” if the United States used force to drive Iraq from Kuwait.

If I remember correctly, in that mother of all battles, air attacks began on January 17, 1991; ground attacks began on February 24, 1991, and by the first of March, it was over.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Cynthia McKinney Gives Orders to the Media

U.S. Representative Cynthia McKinney, D-Ga., who made news last month for allegedly punching a U.S. Capitol Police officer, is making news again.

During a Saturday interview with Georgia's WGCL-TV, CBS 46, McKinney was asked whether the incident with the police office had been a distraction. Her response to reporter Renee Starzyk was "You're a distraction because that seems to be all you want to talk about."

McKinney then walked out of the interview, unknowingly still wearing a live microphone. Off camera, she is then heard saying to an aid, "Now, you know what? They lied to Coz (McKinney's communications director, Coz Carson), and Coz is a fool!"

Realizing her mistake, McKinney returned to the interview room and told Starzyk, "Anything that is captured by your audio, that is captured while I'm not seated in this chair, is off the record and is not permissible to be used. Is that understood?"

McKinney giving orders to the media! This sounds like the same arrogance that caused her to believe that every Capitol Police officer should recognize her face.

Evidently WGCL-TV doesn't take orders very well. The station aired the footage anyway.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

A Clash of Civilizations

Al Jazeera has aired parts of what is said to be a new audiotape from Osama bin Laden. Counterterrorism Blog has outline the ten main points from the tape.

1. Hamas: Despite the fact that we (including Ayman Zawahiri) warned (Muslim Palestinians) not to take part in elections in general, the victory of Hamas shows that there is a "Crusader Zionist War against Islam." Cutting foreign aid to the Palestinians because of Hamas victory proves that war.

2. The public (in the West and the US), despite our warnings, continues to reelect these Governments, pay taxes to these Governments, and send their children to fight against us. They (civilians) are therefore part of the war against us. They are responsible for any harm that would be caused to them.

3. Sudan: The Bashir Government is failing in stopping the Crusader War in Sudan. The Crusaders (Britain) has pushed the southerners (Blacks) to separate. The US has armed them and is supporting them. And now, because of tribal tensions in Darfour, the Crusaders are planning on intervening there. We are calling on the Jihadists to fight them in Darfour and Southern Sudan.

4. Long War: We're calling on all Jihadists, particularly in Sudan and the Arabian Peninsula to prepare themselves for a long war.

5. Danish Cartoons: We are asking the Danish Government to remit the Cartoonists to al Qaida.

6. Saudis: We criticize the Saudi Monarch for refuting the idea of Clash of civilization. There is a clash led by the West against Islam.

7. Arab Liberals: Jihadists must silence the Arab and Muslim liberals. (A list has been established, but it wasn't aired).

8. Education: We warn from any change that would affect the educational curriculum in the Arab and Muslim world.

9. Arab TV: We warn against those TV stations airing into the region and propagating Crusader propaganda.

10: Truce: We offered a truce to the West (US and Europe) but their public refused to accept it. They will only blame themselves.

As I was reading this, point 6 in particular caught my attention because it reminded me of a quote by Omar Ahmad , co-founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group which was first brought to my attention by Malott's Blog . Here is what Ahmad had to say about Islam's intent to co-exist with other faiths.

If you (a Muslim) choose to live here (in the United States), you have a responsibility to deliver the message of Islam ... Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faiths, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.

This and other revealing information and quotations by Ahmad and other CAIR leaders can be found at Anti-CAIR .

Based on Ahmad's quote, I would have to say that bin Laden is correct in one respect: there is a clash of civilizations. It is, though, a clash led by Islam against the West, not the other way around.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

My Plan for Dealing with Illegal Immigration

I am not a member of Congress, and I have no authority to write legislation. However, for what it's worth, this my comprehensive plan for dealing with the problem of illegal immigration.

Any law addressing the problem of illegal immigration must address the following:
1. Securing the border
2. What to do with the 12 million illegal aliens already in the United States

Securing the Border
To secure the border, I would propose a four-pronged approach:

1. Build a wall similar to the one proposed in House Bill 4437. The difference is that, unlike the proposed wall in House Bill 4437, which would be built along only 700 miles of the U.S. – Mexican border, the wall in my bill would stretch along the entire U.S. – Mexican border. Construction of the wall would begin as soon as possible after this bill became law. The construction would, of course, take several years to complete.
2. Enhance the effectiveness of the wall by installing a system of electronic monitoring equipment. Instillation of the electronic monitoring system would begin immediately.
3. Increase border patrol. Training of addition border patrol personnel would begin immediately, and the additional personnel would begin to monitor the border as soon as training is complete.
4. Any person caught illegally entering the United States would be permanently barred from residence in the United States. This provision would go into effect 30 days after the bill became law. That would give the Mexican government and media time to make its citizens aware of the new law. The idea here is that this provision of the bill would act as a deterrent while the first three provisions were being implemented and would continue to act as a deterrent even after the other deterrents were functional.

What to do with the 12 million illegal aliens already in the United States

1. Any illegal alien who has been convicted of a crime in the United States would be deported and would be permanently barred from residence in the United States.

2. All other illegal aliens currently living in the United States.
I don't believe it's practical to attempt to deport 12 million people, nor do I believe that deportation of all illegal aliens is the right answer. As a nation, we have been content for years to look the other way as people have entered our country illegally, and we must, therefore, accept at least some responsibility for the situation we’re in. We now have people who have lived illegally in the United States for 15 or 20 years. Some of these people have children who were born in this country and who are, therefore, U.S. citizens. I don't believe we should now say to these people that they have to leave the country.

At the same time, those who have entered the country illegally should not be rewarded for doing so. They should not realize any advantage over those who are attempting to immigrate to the United States through the proper legal channels.

My proposal would give illegal aliens who have been living productive lives in the United States the opportunity gain citizenship, without moving them ahead of those who are already going through the proper channels. It would also provide a way for the U.S. government to immediately identify illegal aliens currently living in the United States.

1. Illegal aliens who wish to remain in the United States must register within 90 days to become a “registered illegal alien.” Any illegal alien not registered within 90 days, if caught, will be deported, and permanently barred from residence in the United States. Employers who employ or continue to employ an illegal alien after the 90-day registration period must require the illegal alien to possess a "Registered Illegal Alien" card. Severe penalties would be imposed against any employer who employs or continues to employ an unregistered illegal alien. Registered illegal aliens can then take the next step toward naturalization (citizenship).

The combination of permanently barring from residence in the United States any illegal alien who does not register, requiring registration for employment, and providing opportunity to work toward naturalization for those who do register will be a strong incentive for illegal aliens to comply with registration.

1. Live and work anywhere in the U.S.
2. Apply to become a permanent resident.
3. Apply for a driver’s license in his or her state or territory.
4. Attend public school and college.

1. Obey all federal, state, and local laws.
2. Pay federal, state, and local income taxes.
3. Be and remain continuously employed.
4. Pay a special yearly “Illegal Alien Tax.” This tax would be based on the registered illegal alien’s income and would be used to help offset the cost of educating registered illegal aliens who attend public schools.

2. A registered illegal alien may petition for an immigrant visa number as required for all others seeking permanent resident status under current immigration law.
Because U.S. law limits the number of immigrant visa numbers that are available every year, visa petitions for registered illegal aliens would be placed, along with all other visa petitions, in chronological order according to the date the visa petition was filed (priority date). Registered illegal aliens would then be given an immigrant visa number based on the priority date and on the preference category of the illegal immigrant as determined by current immigration law. Preference categories are based upon relationship to U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents, or upon employment qualifications.

As with all others seeking permanent resident status, several years could pass between the time an immigrant visa petition is approved for a registered illegal alien and the time that he or she actually receives an immigrant visa number. No special priority will be given to the registered illegal alien.

3. Once the registered illegal alien receives an immigrant visa number, he or she may apply for permanent resident status.

1. Apply to become a U.S. citizen once he or she is eligible.
2. Request a visa for his or her husband or wife and unmarried children to live in the United States.
3. Get Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, and Medicare benefits, if he or she is eligible.
4. Own property in the U.S.
5. Leave and return to the U.S. under certain conditions.
6. Join certain branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.
7. Purchase or own a firearm, as long as there are no state or local restrictions saying he or she can’t.

1. Register with the Selective Service (U.S. Armed Forces), if the immigrant is a male between ages 18 and 26.

*Once the illegal immigrant obtains permanent resident status, he or she would no longer be required to pay the Illegal Alien Tax.

4. When the registered illegal alien obtains permanent resident status and has remained a lawful permanent resident for a period of five years in accordance with current immigration law, he or she may then file for naturalization (citizenship). The criteria for all immigrants filing for naturalization will apply, including the five year residency criterion, maintaining good moral character as defined by current law, demonstrating that the immigrant is able to read, write, speak, and understand English, passing the U.S. government and history tests, and taking the oath of allegiance.

I believe this plan accomplishes the following:
1. Secures the border against further illegal immigration.
2. Provides the United States with the means of identifying those illegal aliens already in the country.
3. Helps to ensure that illegal aliens help to pay for public education and other government services by paying income and other relevant taxes.
4. Provides a fair solution to the problem of what to do about illegal aliens already in the United States, without allowing them to realize any advantage over those immigrants who have been working within current immigration law.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The Mind of a Liberal

Could there be a better story than this to illustrate the mind and thought process of a liberal?

Yesterday, Jesse Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Coalition announced that they would pay the college tuition of the 27-year-old black woman who has accused white members of the Duke University lacrosse team of raping her after she was hired as a stripper at a team party.

No one has yet been charged in the case, and DNA tests have thus far failed to implicate any of the players. However, the accuser needn't worry; Jackson has said that his group will pay for her tuition even if her story turns out to be false! His reason for wanting to pay her tuition is so that

…she will never again, in an act of desperation, have to expose her body. She should never again have to stoop that low to survive.
Now, it may turn out that this woman really was raped by members of the Duke lacrosse team; the case is still being investigated. However, Jackson's offer of tuition is good whether the accusation is true or not. So, for argument's sake, let's say that the accusation is false. What is Jackson really saying?

He's saying that women are entitled to a college education, and if they can't afford it, there is a simple solution. Become a stripper; get hired to strip dance at a party full of male college athletes; falsely accuse some of the male athletes of raping you; and get your college tuition paid for!

This is how the liberal mind works. This woman is a victim whether she was raped or not. She is a victim of not having enough money to pay for college. She is a victim of being forced to become a stripper. For this she should have her college paid for. If she has falsely accused someone of rape, well, we can't really blame her. She is a victim.

Ah, yes. The mind of a liberal.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Right Thinking Marks 1-Year Anniversary

I should have posted this yesterday, but the date slipped right past me. I know it's difficult to imagine how such a monumental moment in history could have gone unnoticed, but somehow it did. Maybe I'm just getting old (my kids tell me that I am). Maybe that's why I forgot what day it was yesterday.

Anyway, today I remembered that yesterday was the 1-year anniversary of my first post to Right Thinking.

The site has grown from the first days when I has happy if anyone visited, thrilled if I had more than one visitor, and elated the first time I had 10 visitors in one day. Hopefully Right Thinking will continue to grow and improve.

Thank you to everyone who visits this site; I hope you will continue to do so.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

More Good News on the Economic Front

As I reported on Saturday, the Department of Labor's latest report shows good news on the economic front in the way of job creation. Unemployment is down to 4.7%; 211,000 new jobs were created in March, 2.1 million in the last year; and over 5 million new jobs have been created since June 2003.

“But those are low-paying, dead-end jobs!” That’s been the cry of the left, who simply cannot admit that even one positive thing has happened since George W. Bush has been President. Well, they are going to have to come up with some other way to downplay the importance of these impressive employment numbers.

Mark Trumbull of The Christian Science Monitor writes a good summary of the types of jobs that are being created. While low-paying jobs such as those in retail services and leisure/hospitality are among the new jobs that are being created, they are by no means the only jobs that are being created.

Trumbull writes that

Management and professional occupations are employing 1.2 million more people this month than a year ago - or about 1 in 3 new jobs in America. This is the highest-paying of five broad categories tracked by the Labor Department. Not all of them are CEOs or engineers, but the median paycheck for full-time workers in this category is $937 a week, far above the US median of $651.

The construction industry continues to hammer out more than its share of new jobs. It accounts for about 6.4 percent of US jobs, but has provided 14.4 percent of the past year's job growth. The quality of construction jobs is mixed - often offering higher hourly pay than the US median but with lower benefits.

Even the manufacturing sector, which has long offered blue-collar workers a measure of middle-class prosperity, appears to be stabilizing after a period of heavy job losses. Despite downsizing in the automotive industry, 175,000 more people are employed in production occupations today than a year ago.

Trumbull adds that the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, which tracks the higher-paying versus lower-paying jobs that are being added to the economy, has found that "the new jobs in the economy are the kind that tend to pull average wages up, not down."

Positive economic news like this is being released month after month, yet I still hear people talking about the poor economy. It's true that energy prices are high and continue to rise; however, it's also true that Americans are working, wages are increasing, and investments are growing. That's all good news that we're not hearing enough about.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Republicans Need to Secure the Vote of Americans Here Legally

Republican lawmakers need to wake up! Those who are steering to the left by siding with Democrats on immigration are going to steer themselves straight into the unemployment line.

The Democrats are playing this game perfectly. They know that if illegal immigrants are given amnesty and become U.S. citizens, Democrats will have a new and permanent voting block of 12 million voters. Evidently, some Republicans think that by siding with our left-wing friends, they can secure a certain percentage of that voting block for themselves. They had better think again.

The Democrats are really good at this. They champion programs that supposedly help the poor, captivating their hearts and minds and creating a dependable Democratic voting block, when in reality, these programs create government dependency, virtually insuring continued poverty and the opportunity to champion still more programs, and the cycle continues. Yes, the Democrats are really good at this.

Republicans are not going to secure a significant percentage of these votes, but they could significantly help themselves if they would listen to the American people – the ones who are here legally, I mean.

Nearly every poll taken shows that the American people want the government to get tough on illegal immigration, going all the way back to a 1993 Time/CNN poll where 80% said they considered it important for the federal government to track down illegal aliens living the United States.

More recently, a Time Magazine poll taken in January of this year found that 75% of those polled favor "major penalties" on employers of illegals, 70 percent believe illegals increase the likelihood of terrorism and 57 percent would use military force at the Mexican-American border.

A Quinnipiac University poll taken in February asked, "How serious a problem is illegal immigration into the United States: a very serious problem, a somewhat serious problem, not too serious a problem, or not a problem at all?" Fifty seven percent said very serious while 31% said somewhat serious. So 88% saw the problem as either "very" or "somewhat" serious." In the same poll, 62% opposed making it easier for illegal immigrants to become citizens, 54% opposed making it easier for illegal immigrants to become legal workers, 72% opposed allowing illegal immigrants to get drivers' licenses, and 84% supported requiring proof of legal residency in order to obtain government benefits."

An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll conducted in March should be of great interest to lawmakers. When asked, "Would you be more likely or less likely to vote for a candidate who favors tighter controls on illegal immigration," 71% said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who favors tighter controls on illegal immigration.

Republicans are not going to win a large percentage of that voting block that consists of those protesting in cities across America. However, if Republicans would have the courage to take care of the problem of illegal immigration, they could secure the support of American citizens who believe in the rule of law – a pretty large voting block in its own right.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Tax Cuts and Job Growth

Rea S. Hederman Jr. and James Sherk, policy analysts for The Heritage Foundation , took advantage of this week's Department of Labor report on job growth to point out the importance of Congress making the 2003 tax cuts permanent.

The report, released Friday, shows that the unemployment rate is now 4.7%. The number of new jobs created in March is 211,000, pushing the total number of new jobs created over the last year to 2.1 million. Since the June 2003 tax cuts were enacted, the unemployment rate has fallen from 6.3%, and the economy has added over 5 million new jobs.

Hederman and Sherk had this to say about the relationship of the current job growth to the 1993 tax cuts.

This is no coincidence; the 2003 tax cuts reduced the cost of business expansion, fueling economic growth and job creation.

Lower tax rates on capital gains and dividends reduced the cost of capital and spurred business investment during the last three years. Reducing the tax code’s bias against income that is saved and invested has helped to fuel the current economic expansion.

However, as Hederman and Sherk remind us, unless Congress acts, these tax cuts will expire in 2008. The American people need to remind Congress that they work for us and that these tax cuts need to become permanent.

Friday, April 07, 2006

NASCAR Fans Spoil NBC's Attempt to Create News

An NBC News’ attempt to create news has failed. In preparation for an NBC Dateline piece on anti-Arab racism in the United States, the news network “planted” Arab-Muslim men, complete with turbans, in the crowd at last weekend's NASCAR event at the Martinsville Speedway. The idea was to film bigoted NASCAR fans as they harassed the innocent Arab-Muslims with racist remarks. The only problem for NBC is that nobody harassed anyone.

NASCAR's managing director of corporate communications Ramsey Poston commented on the failed attempt by NBC to create a story.

No one bothered them... NASCAR thinks it's absolutely outrageous that you have a news organization trying to make the news instead of reporting the news.

Mike Smith, director of public relations for Martinsville Speedway, added this:

Our security knew almost immediately that [the Dateline crew] were on site and they were monitored the whole time they were here, for obvious reasons -- their protections, fans protection -- and they were not disturbed. It says a lot about our fans... it shows that the image so many people have of NASCAR fans is a false one.

The image Smith is talking about is the image of the NASCAR dad. Wikipedia defines NASCAR dad as follows:

...a male, usually middle-aged, working-class or lower-middle-class, and often rural...

In political theory, the full meaning of the term NASCAR dad implies a bloc of perhaps unsophisticated voters reacting impulsively to 'hot-button' issues such as aversion to gay marriage or facile appeals to patriotism, while ignoring the more complex economic and social issues in an election campaign which invariably might result in a real negative effect upon their lifestyle.

The term was made more popular in the 2004 United States Presidential Election, as a companion term to soccer mom. Yet another constituency, this group was heavily courted by the Republican Party, as their demographic tends to vote this direction historically.

This is the segment of American society that NBC apparently believes is the racist, non-tolerant segment. It’s that segment of American society that is unsophisticated, has an aversion to gay marriage, ignores complex economic and social issues, and, oh yes, tends to vote republican.

It’s too bad that when NBC set out to prove that their notion of the republican voter was accurate, the racist NASCAR crowd didn’t cooperate.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Global Warming?

The Drudge Report had this picture today of a spring snowfall in Queens, New York. Evidently, someone forgot to tell Ol' Man Winter that we have global warming. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

Congresswoman McKinney Plays the Race Card

This week on The Situation Room , Wolf Blitzer interviewed Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, D-GA, who has been accused of assaulting a U.S. Capitol Police officer last Wednesday. The following are portions of the transcript of that interview.

BLITZER …Tell our viewers what happened last week. You were walking into the Longworth House office building, one of the House of Representatives office buildings right near the U.S. Capitol. You were going through the metal detector. Pick up the story. What happened?…

MCKINNEY …What I can say is that this idea that the security of members of Congress is contingent on either a piece of jewelry or the way they wear their hair, I don't understand.

It means, then, that the Congress and the members of Congress are not secure. If the members of the United States Capitol Hill police, who are charged with the responsibility of protecting the members of Congress, don't know who they are, what does that say to us about the kind of security that we have?

McKinney didn't seem interested in talking about what happened, as Blitzer had asked. She seemed more concerned that Capitol Hill police don't know all the members of Congress, so Blitzer reminds her of just how many members of Congress there are.

BLITZER Congresswoman, there are 435 members of the House of Representatives, 100 senators…Members of the House wear a little lapel pin to identify them as members of Congress. Thereby they can avoid going through the metal detectors. They go around them as you well know. On that day, you weren't wearing your lapel pin.

MCKINNEY …Let me just say, the requirement for pages to become a Congressional page at age 16 is to know by face, and by name the members of the United States Congress. Don't you think that the United States Capitol police ought to also know the members of Congress by name and by face? And then, there are only 14 African- American women members of Congress. I don't understand what it is about my face that certain members of the Capitol Hill police department can't remember.

So, according to McKinney, Capitol Police ought to recognize the faces of 535 lawmakers; at least they should recognize the faces of African-American women members of Congress, and because McKinney seems particularly upset that the certain members of the Capitol Hill police can't remember her face, Blitzer points out that McKinney had recently changed her hair style.

BLITZER …We'll put a picture up. A recent photo that is in the Capitol Hill book. This is what you looked like. Now obviously, you have a new hair style as opposed to your old hair style. What they are saying is when you changed your hair style they didn't recognize you. They politely asked you to stop. You resisted several attempts by one of the Capitol Hill police officers to stop and to identify yourself. As a result, there was this altercation, in which they say you allegedly hit the police officer.

MCKINNEY Wolf, the only thing I can say about the juxtaposition of those two pictures is that in one of them I happen to have a little more makeup on. About the way I am here on CNN today. The bottom line is that my face hasn't changed. And I haven't changed. I have looked like this for the entire 11 years I have been in Congress.

So, I don't understand exactly why it is that certain police officers have a problem remembering my face.

At this point McKinney seemed really obsessed with people remembering her face, so Blitzer let that go, and asked a really good question.

BLITZER I guess the basic question is if you stop and identify yourself and go through the metal detector, what was the big deal? Why not do that?

Well, if I had to answer this question, based on what McKinney has said so far, I'd say the big deal is that McKinney seems to be so egotistical that she doesn't want to have to wear her identifying lapel pin, she doesn't want to have to stop and identify herself, and she doesn't want to have to go through the metal detector. She wants every Capitol Hill police officer to recognize her face. That's how I would answer Blitzer's last question. McKinney, on the other hand, doesn’t answer the question at all. Here is her response.

MCKINNEY That goes to the heart of press conference that we had today. I want to thank you for covering the other press conference that we had on Friday with Danny Glover and Harry Belafonte.

But today, we had Black elected officials from the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus. At the time Coretta Scott King's body lay in state at the Georgia State Capitol, the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus was not allowed into the building to form a part of the procession. Why? They can't even answer the question. Except that the security at the Georgia Capitol didn't recognize them as duly elected members able to carry out the mandate of the people who sent them to legislature.

As a result of police action, that was -- we can't understand why -- the members of the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus were disrespected, that is what they said today and forced to look at the body of Coretta Scott King from the third floor of state capitol. The bottom line on this, is that it doesn't matter if you're in the United States Capitol or the Georgia Capitol, the issue is racial profiling.

What? Remember Blitzer’s question? “I guess the basic question is if you stop and identify yourself and go through the metal detector, what was the big deal? Why not do that?” How does McKinney’s answer address Blitzer’s question? It doesn’t!

Blitzer then went to a commercial, and when he came back from commercial, he asked McKinney point blank, “Congresswoman McKinney, did you strike one of those Capitol police officers during this incident on Capitol Hill?”

MCKINNEY Wolf, before you bring on my two attorneys, let me just say for the record -- and this is something that you might want to do a little further investigation on. But I'm sure that if you would look, you would find that even inside the Capitol Hill Police Department, there are problems inside with the treatment of -- or the respect for diversity, let me say.

After a little back and forth between Blitzer and McKinney, with Blitzer talking about McKinney turning this into a racial incident and with McKinney telling Blitzer that he should look into “some of the proceedings that are going on right now with black officers and white officers inside Capitol Hill Police Department,” Blitzer finally tells McKinney, “This is an extremely serious charge you're making, Congresswoman.”

MCKINNEY Well, I haven't made a charge. I just asked you to do a little bit of research.

BLITZER No, no, no. But you are talking earlier about racial profiling and that there was racism involved.

MCKINNEY Now, Wolf, you know I didn't say that, so don't twist my words.

BLITZER Well tell us what you said.

MCKINNEY Don't even begin to twist my words. And whatever it is that I said is already is on the tape. So you can replay the tape. Now, I think it is probably a good time for you to bring in my attorneys...

So she didn’t say this was a case of racial profiling, and she thinks we should replay the tape. OK, let's replay the tape.

MCKINNEY ...The bottom line on this, is that it doesn't matter if you're in the United States Capitol or the Georgia Capitol, the issue is racial profiling.

Sorry, Congresswoman McKinney, but you did say that. Blitzer did not twist your words.

Cynthia McKinney did not answer a single question Blitzer asked her. She spent her entire time arrogantly complaining that people don't recognize her face and shamelessly playing the race card.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

It's Racism, Stupid!

Why did the New Orleans levee breach? It’s racism, stupid. Louis Farrakhan said, “It may have been blown up to destroy the black part of town and keep the white part dry."

Why did the federal government leave people stranded on rooftops after the flooding of New Orleans? It’s racism, stupid. Michael Moore said, “C'mon, they're black! ... Can you imagine leaving white people on their roofs for five days?”

Why is Barry Bonds being investigated for steroid usage? It’s racism, stupid. Leonard Moore , director of African and African-American Studies at Louisiana State University, said, "White America doesn't want him to (pass) Babe Ruth and is doing everything they can to stop him."

Why did a Capitol Hill police officer physically prevent Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, who did not have on her identifying lapel pin and who continued walking even though the officer asked her three times to stop, from entering a House office building? It’s racism, stupid. Congresswoman McKinney said, "The issue is racial profiling." McKinney’s attorney, James W. Myart Jr. said, "Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, like thousands of average Americans across this country, is, too, a victim of the excessive use of force by law enforcement officials because of how she looks and the color of her skin."

It's racism, stupid! I just wanted to clear that up.

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